John Lautner's Silvertop

All kinds of Elegance and Badassery
Inside an iconic modern masterpiece.

I’ve posted to Instagram about one of my design heroes, architect John Lautner before, so when I recently had the opportunity to spend a Harvest Moon-lit evening in one of his most celebrated residential works, the Silvertop House, I went into full-on GEEK OUT mode.  One of the things I love the most about Lautner’s work in relation to other architects of the mid-century period is his mastery of mixing the curved plane with the straight, and in doing so, injecting a masterful touch of organic sensuality to otherwise quite geometric spaces.  Walking through the home was like engulfing yourself in a symphony of light and line.  The warmth of wood.  The weight of stone.  And the thoughtful ways (groundbreaking at the time) technology was used to elevate the experience within the concrete, wood and glass.
Joh Lautner's Silvertop
A bit of background:  the house was originally begun in 1957, commissioned by businessman Kenneth Reiner (inventor of women’s spring-loaded hair barettes!) who, along with Mr. Lautner, worked together to design a home full of technological advances, including the one of the first infinity pools in Los Angeles. Some of my personal favorite details were  the hidden rotating closet (Like a spice rack for your clothes!), the floor to ceiling automated vertical shutters that could be closed while the windows were open, allowing for subtle control of the light and temperature, and the fully retractable glass walls and roof in the master bathroom.  Al fresco shower anyone? Overall there was a lot of automation in the house, and I was especially enamored with the custom brass panels of beautiful minimalist icons to indicate what each little knob activated.  (I’ve been digging all over the internets to try and find out who designed those icons - if anyone reading this knows, please share in the comments!) 
John Lautner's Silvertop Exterior Glass
John Lautner's Silvertop Bedroom 1
John Lautner's Silvertop Bedroom 2
It was such a wonderful experience to be able to walk through that home and imagine living in such a thoughtfully constructed space.  When this house was built, the day to day lives we lead now could only be imagined - but the focus on the simultaneously soothing and inspiring elements of thoughtful, dynamic design that Lautner utilized create a timelessness that enables this home (and many mid-century structures built with similar philosophies) to not only endure, but strike a real chord in the hearts of those of us living in this hectic “modern” age.
 Note: Since it is a private home, photography was not allowed while I was visiting Silvertop.  All included photos are by Cameron Carothers via Curbed LA and Julius Schulman. 
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Of A Kind

Our exclusive edition of Of A Kind is out! Get it here, along with some of our favorite ways to spend a Sunday in Seattle.

 

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CARLO SCARPA

CARLO SCARPA


Carlo Scarpa - Where Architecture, Design, and Art Intersect
Discover more about one of our design heroes and how his work inspired the new collection, LINEA.

Perhaps no other mid-century architect toed the line between functional structure and modernist masterpiece with more precision than Carlo Scarpa. Born in 1906, Scarpa would become a key force behind Italy’s unique brand of modernist contributions -- and, eventually, one of the key inspirations behind the White/Space LINEA collection.
One of Scarpa’s most celebrated works, the Tomba Brion (in the image above) in Northeastern Italy, is perhaps the greatest example of his influential eye for detail, and its visual language was a jumping off point for the genesis of our latest collection. Tall cypress trees are interspersed among concrete geometric patterns -- a signature Scarpa juxtaposition between natural and industrial elements. A network of pathways connects reflective pools and canals of flowing water, offering an unexpected sense of serenity in a typically somber setting. A major focal point features two overlapping circles meant to honor the Taoist symbol for the lifelong union between two married people. Appropriately, this frames the Brion couple’s side-by-side tombs. 
Scarpa had a knack for striking a balance between design and craftsmanship; rigid and fluid; symmetric and asymmetric; classic and cutting-edge; organic and polished. He manipulated color, texture, and light to portray movement. He paired timber with steel, brass with marble, and glass with iron to create works that were minimalistic at first glance, but complex and deliberate upon closer inspection.
 While designing this latest collection, I set out to honor the beauty that results from these intersections. The collection features wearable curves, swoops, and sharp contrasting lines; Fluidity comes into play with luminescent pearls, and sparkling diamonds set atop smooth textures. Available finishes include hand-polished and matte brushed metalwork -- all carefully handcrafted to become a special piece in your life.
Photos courtesy of www.carloscarpa.es and Guido Guidi for abitare.it
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5 Places We'd like to Ring in the New Year

White/Space loves Seattle. It’s home to our Pioneer Square walk-up studio, it’s where we first embarked on the wild and beautiful ride that is motherhood, and it’s where we create, live, and play. The Space Needle’s New Year’s Eve firework show is great and all, but if we had enough frequent flyer miles stocked up to jetset across the world and celebrate, these destinations top our wish list.

Antarctica

Okay, so you can’t just up and hop any old plane to Antarctica -- but you can fly to the Southern tip of South America, where you can board a charter plane or cruise ship and head for the Antarctic Peninsula. Summer in the Southern Hemisphere runs from the end of December through March, so if you’re down for some sub-freezing adventure, the New Year is the best time to see penguins and other wildlife. Just be sure to travel responsibly and be extra-conscious about the pristine natural environment you’re entering as a guest!

Barcelona

Oh, Barcelona. So cool, so inspiring, such a beautiful mashup of historic architecture and youth culture. AND beaches!  We could eat Patatas Bravas (fried potato morsels with delicious aioli… basically Catalonian street fries) all day.  After you've checked out all the Gaudí structures and had some amazing meals, ring in Nochevieja by participating in Barcelona’s giant celebration at the Moment ontjüic fountains, complete with a midnight pyrotechnic show… or sipping Cava at the city center, Plaça de Catalunya. We especially wouldn’t mind staying up late and dancing along to some of Spain’s best DJs at any of the city’s nightclubs.

 

#tbt #views from the crowd #drakefest #zurich

A photo posted by Stimulus | The MC | The DJ (@stimmystim) on


Berlin

Berlin thrives on nightlife, and New Year’s Eve is the best occasion to stay up later than ever. Slip into that perfectly cut jumpsuit and slink into any of Berlin’s avant-garde nightclubs to toast to new beginnings. After a few cocktails, take to the streets to countdown to midnight between Brandenburg Gate and Victory Column, where one of Europe’s largest open-air parties takes place until the wee hours of January 1.

If you can catch our old NYC friend (and now frequent Berlin resident) Stimulus spinning his killer mixes around town, I’d highly recommend it (and either way, check him out on Soundcloud and follow on Instagram).

Fez

We’d like to spend all day getting lost in the bustling streetside marketplaces throughout Morocco’s fourth most populous city. Along the way, the famed tanneries top our list of must-sees. Each day, leather goods are soaked and dip-dyed in large, open-air vats of colorful dye before eventually making their way to the Medina of Fez and other public bazaars.

 

Reykjavik

 I've never been to Reykjavik for New Year's Eve, but it was so interesting and beautiful when I did go a few years back, I wouldn't hesitate to go again. I was lucky enough to witness the northern lights and it's definitely a must-see during the winter months.  The locals are known to light up the New Year’s Eve sky with independent fireworks displays, all of which come together for a spectacularly bright show. We’d love to warm up and celebrate under the blasts at a giant bonfires (called a brenna in Iceland), then stick around for the rest of the week and try to catch the Aurora Borealis (Iceland’s long, dark autumn and winter nights make this the best season for spotting the northern lights).

 

Cheers to 2017!      - K
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